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Top Thirty Indie Films

Top Thirty Indie Films

Check out this list of the 30 most significant indie films in the last 30 years (full list, which includes three edited by the late great Sally Menke, is below).

To celebrate its 30th Anniversary, The Independent Film & Television Alliance (IFTA) picked the 30 most influential films of the past 30 years. Twenty-seven members of IFTA’s board of directors culled through indie-financed pics from all over the world, looking at innovative style, critical acclaim, awards and talent discovery. Says chairman Lloyd Kaufman: “From Oscar winners to controversial and visionary game changers, independent films have shaped and defined the film industry and popular culture over the last 30 years.”

The thirty week series kicks off at L.A.’s American Cinematheque Wednesday night with director Jim Sheridan presenting his 1989 My Left Foot (featuring Daniel Day Lewis’s Oscar winning performance) at the Egyptian Theatre.


Amadeus; Blue Velvet; Dances With Wolves; Das Boot (The Boat); Gandhi; My Left Foot; A Nightmare On Elm Street; Platoon; Sex, Lies and Videotape; The Terminator.

(Honorary mentions: The Killing Fields; The Last Emperor; The Toxic Avenger)


Braveheart; Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon; Fargo; Four Weddings and a Funeral; Life Is Beautiful; Pulp Fiction; Reservoir Dogs; The Silence of the Lambs; The Usual Suspects; Where the Day Takes You.

(Honorary mentions: Basic Instinct, Good Will Hunting; Trainspotting)


Brokeback Mountain; Crash; The Hurt Locker; Inglourious Basterds; Juno; Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring; Million Dollar Baby; Monster; The Pianist; Slumdog Millionaire.

(Honorary mentions: Bowling for Columbine; Memento; Twilight)

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